Macklemore Brings Message of Equal Rights to the Heights

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Gasson Hall at Boston College

It’s no secret that hip-hop artist Macklemore is an ally of the LGBTQ community; he supports the efforts of the You Can Play project, he has a gay uncle, and – oh yeah – there’s this catchy song on his latest album co-written with singer Mary Lambert called “Same Love,” which decries homophobia and advocates for equal treatment for all.

Last Thursday, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis gave a concert at my alma mater (yes, this happened, but you might not have heard about it – BC wanted concert organizers and the student body to keep the free, outdoor performance under wraps [unlike other things]). When I heard he’d be performing, I wondered – would he speak out for gay rights on the campus of a Catholic university? Would he sing the song?

Of course he would. The man who was bold enough to release a hip-hop album with a  track like “Same Love” wouldn’t hesitate to spread his pro-equality message on Boston College’s campus. He prefaced his performance with the following words:

“. . . in my gut, I feel that no government, that no state, no institution, no religion, no other human being can tell you who you love in your heart, in spite of it all – that is up to you. Finally, in 2013, we are starting to have conversation and dialogue and the fear and the hatred that has been passed on from generation to generation to generation is finally starting to dissipate and love is prevailing. I believe in tolerance, I believe in compassion, I believe in equal rights . . . this song is called ‘Same Love,’ let’s go.”

Eloquent words delivered calmly but with purpose; with the impressive sound system that had been trucked in, there was no doubt his message would reach to the far edges of the campus. Equally as sonorous and inspiring as the rapper’s intro was the unified voice of the crowd of students, loudly and proudly singing the chorus along with the voice of Lambert: “I can’t change / even if I tried / even if I wanted to / my love, my love, my love / she keeps me warm . . . love is patient, love is kind / love is patient, love is kind.”

What a powerful message to be echoing through the Heights. I hope everyone was listening.

Gay, straight, or bi (or anything in between), you should watch the beautifully produced music video for the song, co-directed by Lewis. After you inevitably fall for “Same Love,” you can purchase the song on iTunes; in fact, I’d suggest buying the whole album, because not only is Macklemore a vocal supporter of the LGBTQ community, he’s also a captivatingly-talented musical artist. Buying “The Heist” will not only provide you with the perfect music to blast with your windows down as you breeze (or more likely crawl) along the Pike, it’s also a way to support a man who is doing so much do support equality for all.